US 20080265012 A1
A banknote acceptor includes a validator, a removable banknote stacker and a removable non locked banknote cassette. The removable banknote stacker, when secured in the banknote acceptor, is operable by a drive member of the acceptor that remains with the acceptor when the removable banknote stacker is removed. With this arrangement, any operation problems of the removable stacker are easily overcome by replacement of the stacker. Preferably, the banknote acceptor, with the stacker removed, is able to receive and function with a locked banknote cassette having a stacker mechanism internal to the cassette.
1. A banknote acceptor comprising a validator, a removable banknote stacker supported below said validator and positioned to receive banknotes accepted by said validator; said banknote acceptor further including a non locked banknote cassette releasably engagable with said banknote acceptor and cooperating with said removable banknote stacker to receive an accepted banknote from said validator in an initial position intermediate said removable banknote stacker and said cassette with the accepted banknote movable by operation of said removable banknote stacker into said cassette; said removable banknote stacker when a engagement with said banknote acceptor being actuated by a drive member secured in said banknote acceptor; and wherein said banknote stacker is removable from said banknote acceptor independent of said drive member.
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The present invention relates to banknote acceptors and in particular, to a banknote acceptor that includes a removable stacking mechanism for cooperation with a removable banknote cassette.
Banknote acceptors typically include a banknote validator that cooperates with a removable banknote cassette that stores accepted banknotes in a stacked manner. Many of the banknote acceptors include a removable metal or plastic banknote cassette that is lockable. In this way, the banknote cassette can be removed from the banknote acceptor and any banknotes received in the banknote cassette are not accessible. Typically, these lockable banknote cassettes are taken to a secure facility and the banknote cassettes are unlocked and the banknotes counted and processed.
Typically, the removable banknote cassette that is lockable includes its own internal stacking mechanism that is typically driven by a drive member of the banknote acceptor. The drive member can include a rack and gear arrangement or a cam arrangement that typically drives a scissor bar type mechanism within the banknote cassette to add a received banknote to a stack of banknotes within the cassette.
For some applications, the banknote acceptor does not require the additional cost of a lockable banknote cassette. Some banknote acceptors include a stacking mechanism as part of the actual banknote acceptor that cooperates with a non lockable banknote cassette. These non lockable banknote cassettes are received in the banknote acceptor and one side of the banknote cassette is basically open. A received banknote is forced through this large opening and stacked within the removable cassette. When the cassette is removed, the last stacked banknote is exposed within the large port of the cassette. It is common practice to have such open or unlocked cassettes made of a plastic material as there is no requirement for the housing of the cassette to provide security as the stacked banknotes are easily accessed through the open port.
The present invention provides a number of improvements to banknote acceptors and provides additional flexibility with respect to such banknote acceptors.
A banknote acceptor according to the present invention comprises a validator, a removable banknote stacker supported below said validator and positioned to receive banknotes accepted by said validator. The banknote acceptor further includes a non locked banknote cassette releasably engagable with said banknote acceptor and cooperates with the removable banknote stacker to receive an accepted banknote from said validator in an initial position intermediate said removable banknote stacker and said cassette with the accepted banknote movable by operation of said removable banknote stacker into said cassette; said removable banknote stacker being actuated by a drive member secured in said banknote acceptor independent of said removable banknote stacker.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention the removable banknote stacker includes a spring latch securement to a body frame of the banknote acceptor.
In an aspect of the invention, the non locked banknote cassette is releasably secured to the removable banknote stacker.
In a further aspect of the invention, the non locked plastic cassette includes securing lugs received in securing ports of the removable banknote stacker in combination with a manually releasable spring latch to releasably secure said non locked cassette to said removable stacker.
In a different aspect of the invention, the banknote acceptor includes a body frame that supports the validator and the removable banknote stacker. The body frame with the removable banknote stacker removed includes securing ports for releasably engaging a locked banknote cassette having a stacker mechanism internal to said locked banknote cassette.
According to an aspect of the invention, the releasable stacker has a majority of injected molded plastic components.
In a further aspect of the invention, the removable banknote stacker includes opposed side members with each side member including first and second lock slots. The non locked plastic cassette includes side securing lugs receivable in the first and second securing slots to form part of the releasable securement of the non locked plastic cassette to the removable banknote stacker.
Preferred embodiments of the invention are shown in the drawings, wherein:
The banknote acceptor 2 includes a validator 4 secured within a body frame 10. The non locked banknote cassette 20 is shown secured within the body frame 10. Also received within the body frame 10 is the removable stacker 40.
The perspective views of
The non locked banknote cassette 20 as shown in
The non locked banknote cassette 20 is often of a plastic material to reduce the cost thereof relative to a locked metal banknote cassette.
The stacker plate 52, when driven by the stacker mechanism as shown in
The removable stacker 40 provides a cost effective method for repair of a banknote acceptor if the stacker mechanism is not operating properly. The operator can merely remove the stacker mechanism and insert a new mechanism which cooperates with the drive arrangement within the body frame 10.
A further advantage of the banknote acceptor 2 shown in the drawings, is the capability of the banknote acceptor to also receive a lockable banknote cassette. Such lockable banknote cassettes include their own internal stacking mechanism having a similar stacking mechanism all internal to the cassette. Such lockable banknote cassettes also include a large drive port for engaging a drive member of the body frame 10.
The banknote acceptor 2 as shown in
With this arrangement, a purchaser may initially buy the banknote acceptor 2, for use with the less expensive non locked banknote cassette 20. The purchaser may have a number of non locked banknote cassettes 20 and a substantial saving is realized, not only due to the use of the plastic material, however, each banknote cassette does not include its own stacking mechanism, as would be the case with a lockable banknote cassette.
With different applications of banknote acceptors, the requirements of the system may change. For example, there may be a concern with respect to changes in operating personnel and a higher security arrangement may be required. In such a case, the removable stacker 40 can be removed from the frame 10 and a lockable banknote cassette can be used with the validator.
With the present system, the purchaser has the ability to switch between lockable banknote cassettes and non locked banknote cassettes. It can also be appreciated that this type of change in configuration does not require a change in the validator 4 or the frame 10. The operator may therefore change the particular configurations of his validators, depending upon the particular application. The changeover does not require any specialized tools as the removable stacker is releasable from the frame 10, due to a spring du tente? arrangement.
Although various preferred embodiments of the present invention have been described herein in detail, it will be appreciated by those skilled in the art, that variations may be made thereto without departing from the spirit of the invention or the scope of the appended claims.